I could live in there permanently. Sell the house, move in, enjoy fresh air all year round (ok, including a backup for very cold winter nights). Our Outwell Montana 6P is a fantastic tent for a long term holiday, or something even longer than that.
Five years ago some friends showed off their newly purchased tent. It was huge, looked like a UFO and had the entire family in a camping craze. We were still unsure whether we should go for a camper or a tent, so we checked the website of that UFO-tent producer. Outwell, a Danish company.
After hours of comparing their various family tents we finally went for the Montana 6P. A choice we have not regretted at all, and talk about a camper has since then not happened in our family.
Outwell Montana 6P – that’s what it’s like
The Montana 6P sleeps six (in theory), we have used it for max. four so far. It is a huge tent for the four of us, and that was our intention when buying it: to have some space and a playground for the kids just in case it is pouring down outside.
Claustrophobia should not be a main concern with this tent. There is lots of space inside, both within the sleeping area as well as the front. And what I love about the front area: due to the large windows it is really bright inside, not an old-tent-like feeling at all (like back in those old days when it was all dark and damp inside).
The Montana 6P is a fully closed tent – with that I mean that not a drop of water will enter the tent as long as the entrances are shut. Bottom and sides are stitched/glued together, and this is absolutely perfect for leaving bags, clothes, games, etc., simply lying around.
Underneath the tent we use two sets of layers:
- layer 1: directly on the ground, two 4x3m groundsheets (we use two of those next to each other so we can take one of them when hiking with the smaller tent…)
- layer 2: from Outwell specifically produced for the Montana 6P, between layer 1 and tent.
Why are we using two additional layers? To make sure the tent does not get damaged by small, sharp obstacles lying around on the ground (mainly tiny stones).
Up and down
For putting up the tent including all the stuff that is required for a three week camping holiday I need something like three hours plus – if I am more or less alone. The same amount of time I need for putting it down and stowing away all the paraphernalia in the car. With the kids and wife around it can be a lot less, but we are usually not a lot quicker than two hours.
Sounds like a lot of “work”? Well, probably yes. But if all is done properly then there is hardly any correction, etc., needed throughout the entire holiday. And as long as the sun is out, a cup of tea supporting the work, then this is part of the camping holiday as well.
Inside the Montana 6P
I won’t talk about every single seam or piece of line that came with the tent. This is just a brief list of what I found really helpful and comfy to have right at the start, without having to either additionally buy something or amend it:
- two sleeping cabins, can be separated and removed individually
- organising or storage bags in front of the sleeping cabins
- three entrances in three directions, so wherever wind and rain are coming from you can choose the driest one
- excellent zippers on all entrances and sleeping cabin, never getting stuck or breaking down
- insect screens on every single opening, be it for ventilation or an entrance
For lots of our other camping equipment, which we have either had from previous camping trips or have bought for our Montana 6P, I will write a separate post. This will then include my personal top lists for winner equipment as well as absolute loser equipment (yes, those do exist even in my world).
Problems so far with the Montana 6P
I guess I had to include this chapter – or at least its title – in this post. This is something I had to think about really hard as I am absolutely happy with my outdoor castle. So, what is annoying, at least a tiny bit?
It is possible but not a real joy to pitch the Montana 6P all alone. Some help with the four set of poles I do appreciate a lot, after that it is rather easy to finish it by myself. Obviously, the same is true for taking the tent down again.
After 13 weeks of usage we have had only one very minor tear (in a rain protection above one of the ventilation slots). How come? While putting up our Montana 6P for this year’s summer holiday I pulled a little too hard without looking where I was pulling at – bad idea. However, no big deal, a small outdoor sticky tape did the trick and not a single drop of rain entered the tent.
This is it, really. I can see this is somehow hard to understand, especially because this tent has been used regularly during the last couple of years. There is, however, absolutely nothing wrong with it. It is still strong, perfectly built and a great shelter.
As mentioned in a previous article, Hubert super-camper (i.e. me) has bought a not fully fitting front extension. This front extension is for a Montana 6 hence it is a marginally lower front extension than the “correct” one. However, it does its job and has proven to be a more than valuable add-on. That is a massive understatement. Truth is: it is the best and most valuable equipment we have bought so far. It is a fantastic gateway from a wet outside to a dry inside. During this year’s summer holidays, we have had several days of rain and on all of them we managed to enjoy our meals outside. And stay dry at the same time.
If you are unsure whether or not a front extension would make sense: go for it! It is like an additional room, with direct contact to the outside world. For our Montana 6P and probably any other “huge” tent around I would not want to miss a front extension.
By the way: Luckily, I have sold the “wrong” front extension. And I will make absolutely sure that for our next camping holiday I will have the correct one…
Would I buy a Montana 6P again?
For a family with two young kids: yes, definitely.
Or, maybe, another Outwell tent which is similar to the Montana 6P with a built in front extension. I would check the entire Outwell product range and am sure there would be more than one product to choose from.
Any other tents?
This post is not a product placement or an ad. We have bought the Montana 6P four years ago and are still happy with it. This summer we and our “tent family” have lost an aged member (a three person tent, 15 years old, quite heavy, which I also used for hiking around Fehmarn). Shortly afterwards a new tent family member arrived, sleeping two, light weight – and I am sure I’ll use it for one or the other hiking trip next year. I’ll keep you posted…
It is not all about the tent, of course, camping equipment to one or the other extent is also necessary. This topic I will cover in a future post – one of these days…